Temporary Skill Shortage Visa (Subclass 482) comes with Condition 8607 according to which you must commence work within 90 days of grant of visa or arrival in Australia, as the case may be, and must not be unemployed for more than 60 days consecutively, amongst other conditions.
Schedule 8 of the Migration Regulations 1994 provides:
(1) The holder must work only in the occupation (the nominated occupation) nominated by the nomination identified in the application for the most recent Subclass 482 (Temporary Skill Shortage) visa granted to the holder.
(4) Subject to sub clause (6), the holder must commence work within:
(a) if the holder was outside Australia when the visa was granted—90 days after the holder’s arrival in Australia; or
(b) if the holder was in Australia when the visa was granted—90 days after the holder’s visa was granted.
(5) If the holder ceases employment, the period during which the holder ceases employment must not exceed 60 consecutive days….”
482 Visa Holders are Outside Australia
For new 482 visa holders who have not yet come to Australia, while there is no specific time frame to come to Australia, you are expected to come before the expiry of your visa. The requirement of commencing employment with 90 days doesn’t kick in before you arrive in Australia, so you are safe. However, if your arrival gets significantly delayed, the Department may raise questions regarding the continued need for visa 482 or may also proceed to cancel your visa in cases where they determine you have ceased to have a genuine intention to perform the nominated occupation.
For TSS 482 visa holders who were previously in Australia but are currently ineligible return will not be considered to have ceased employment just because you are not in Australia. The Department takes into consideration legitimate circumstances or reasonable grounds for you to be absent from Australia and as such, you will not be considered to be in breach of Condition 8607. However, the Department may raise questions regarding the continued need for the 482 visa depending on your circumstances. You may also have your visa cancelled and the Department may make arrangements to reinstate visas as appropriate when the travel restrictions are longer in place. The Department is required to inform you in writing if your visa is being cancelled.
482 Visa Holders are in Australia
482 visa holders are given a 60 days window to enable finding a new approved sponsor after ceasing employment with current sponsor (employer) without affecting the visa status. However, in times of economic slowdown and recession brought by Coronavirus (Covid-19), it is not hard to imagine many people losing jobs or being temporarily laid off in Australian job market across various industries, significantly impacting the TSS visa holders.
You are considered to have ceased your employment if you have been temporarily laid off by your employer and may be in breach of condition 8607 if you do not inform the Department and it has been more than 60 consecutive days since your employment ceased. The Department may cancel your visa for a possible breach of condition 8607. Thus, your employer must notify the Department and discuss particular circumstances to avoid the breach of your visa condition.
Undertaking part-time work with your employer is NOT considered to have ceased your employment. Thus, as per Department’s Policy you will not be considered to be in breach of Condition 8607 solely on this basis. However, having said that, since 482 visa program requires nominations to be for full-time positions, employers must continue to meet their sponsorship obligations. Under limited circumstances, the Department may consider such arrangements to be appropriate.
Leave Without Pay
If you are on unpaid leave not exceeding 3 months you are NOT considered to be in breach of Condition 8607 solely on this basis since you are still under employment of the sponsor. Under exceptional circumstances justifying a longer period of unpaid leave, the Department may consider on a case by case basis. The Department may also proceed to cancel your visa in cases where they determine you have ceased to have a genuine intention to perform the nominated occupation.
You are considered to have ceased employment if you have been given written notice by your employer regarding ceasing for your employment from a particular date and that date has passed. If Temporary Skill Shortage Visa do not find another employer to sponsor your stay in Australia within 60 days, you are in breach of Condition 8607 and your visa may be prematurely cancelled for breaching the visa condition.
If you continue staying in Australia without a valid visa, you may face some serious consequences including detention and removal from Australia. It is advisable to apply for a Bridging Visa E (BVE) which lets you remain in Australia lawfully for a short period while you make arrangements to leave.
If you are stuck in any such situation or are facing issues of visa expiry, loss of work, inability to travel or any other migration related matter, call us on (02) 4626 100 to discuss your circumstances or Contact Us so that our TSS visa agent can help you.